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Each and every aspect of OpenOffice, LibreOffice, Java and Base in

Linux distros do not install Base because most people do not understand
this drunken cousin of a component anyway. Linux users can install the
missing component within seconds.

Without Base you give up the capability to print serial letters and
labels from lists.The vast majority of Base users are Writer users
creating a serial letter or sheet of labels. These wizards generate Base
documents in the background. In 99% of all these cases the Base
documents constitutes a connection to a spreadsheet.

If you are familiar with your own database stuff, Base is almost fully
functional without any Java. Without any Java being installed, you can
connect to your non-Java database, query meaningful data sets, create
input forms but you can _not_ create embedded reports for pretty output.
Instead of embedded reports you can use Calc as a very powerful report
engine and you can copy (not link) database data into stand-alone Writer

Hope this helps,

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